Puppy Mills and Pet Stores

There are more than 10,000 horrific puppy mills nationwide.  Most people care but are just unaware.  We can end puppy mill cruelty through education.  Did you know that 99% of the puppies sold in pet stores come from puppy mills?  One way to stop the thousands of puppies born in these mills is to focus on the pet stores that sell them.

Facts About Puppy Mills in our Country

  • Puppy mills are either licensed by the USDA or unlicensed.
  • There are approx 167,388 breeding dogs in those licensed facilities.
  • Over 1 million puppies are produced every year by licensed facilities.
  • Each female gives birth to approx.9.4 puppies every year.
  • 2.4 million puppies are sold by licensed and unlicensed puppy mills every year.
  • Missouri has the most problem puppy mills for the 7th year in a row.
  • Puppy mills are not required to report the number of dogs that die while in their facilities.

How Can We Stop Puppy Mills?

The more people that become educated about what is really going on in these facilites, the better chance there is to take action and stop these horrific puppy mills.  Perhaps the most important action people can take is to stop buying these puppies.  Adopt a dog from a shelter, instead.

Another action is to become aware of pet stores in your area.  Do they sell puppies?  Ask where they get the puppies (they probably won’t tell you).  Tell them you will let everyone know that their pet store won’t tell you.  Make it clear to the owner that you will not purchase anything from them and will give your business to pet stores that don’t sell puppies.

Instead of selling puppies from puppy mills, pet stores are being encouraged (and pressured) to work with shelters and rescues to place those puppies.  This designates the pet store as a “Puppy Friendly Pet Store” that adopts the philosophy that “we love puppies, that’s why we don’t sell them!”.

A pet store that is a “Puppy Friendly Pet Store” makes a pledge not to sell puppies and instead offers puppies for adoption from local shelters.  Read more at www.humanesociety.org

Puppies Sold Online and at Flea Markets

A large number of puppies from puppy mills are sold online and at flea markets.  Online sellers show pictures of clean facilities, an idealic setting and well taken care of moms and puppies.  The reality is far from that image.  These online sellers won’t let you come to their facility.  They will only meet you somewhere.  Be aware of why that is.  Do not buy a puppy from someone who won’t let you come to their home, see the mother and interact with the puppies.  Flea markets have the same issue.

The situation of unregulated puppy mills and deplorable conditions of these facilities (both licensed and unlicensed) continues.  California was the first state to ban the sale of puppies in pet stores.  Progress has been made with almost 300 cities and counties in the US banning pet stores from selling puppies..

Take a look at these online websites of puppies for sale and what the actual home/facility looked like. This document comes from the Humane Society of the U.S.

Want to learn more about the latest puppy mill projects?  Visit the Humane Society’s website.

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